This Homemade Cranberry Sauce Recipe is a delicious twist on classic cranberry sauce with added pomegranate juice. It’s so easy and bursting with flavor!
This sauce is incredibly versatile and not just for holiday time. Don’t miss the list at the bottom of the article for suggested uses beyond turkey.
Best Cranberry Sauce Recipe
When I was a kid, we had a pomegranate tree in our back yard. Once they were ripe, the family would gather around the kitchen table, scooping out all the seeds into a large community bowl. Then we would eat the seeds by large spoonfuls. I remember the seeds had a slight crunch, popping in my mouth, releasing their juice – my tongue and lips would be stained purple for a little while. It remains such a great childhood memory.
That pomegranate tree has since been replaced by tangelos, so I’ve been reduced to buying them at the store like common folk. Lol. Sometimes I’ll even splurge and buy just the seeds, but that’s not nearly as much fun. I also buy pomegranate juice for Thanksgiving to make this homemade cranberry sauce recipe.
This easy cranberry sauce recipe is loaded with complex flavor from the pomegranate juice and also orange juice, warm spices, and of course cranberries. But so incredibly simple to make. The look, the smell, the taste – all of it will make your mouth water. Everyone loves it!
What You’ll Need:
You only need a few simple ingredients to make this easy cranberry sauce:
(Scroll below to the printable recipe card for details and measurements.)
- Cranberries: Fresh or frozen cranberries both work beautifully, so you can make this recipe all year round.
- Pomegranate juice: Pomegranates are tart, sweet, and bold in flavor, very much like cranberries, so they’re great together.
- Orange juice: This citrus has a natural sweetness and acidity, with a sharp and zesty flavor.
- Brown sugar: For sweetness and to balance our the tart citrus. We use light brown sugar for a modest molasses flavor. If you want to take that richness up a notch, feel free to use dark brown sugar.
- Cinnamon: A wonderful, warm fall flavor.
- Salt and pepper: To bring all the flavors together, so the dish isn’t flat.
Use Fresh or Frozen Cranberries
How to Make Cranberry Sauce
It’s so easy to make homemade cranberry sauce and once you do, you’ll never buy it from a can again! Here’s a brief rundown:
(Scroll down to the printable recipe card for all the complete details.)
- Mix together all of the ingredients in a saucepan.
- Bring to a boil; reduce heat to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until the cranberries pop and the sauce has thickened.
- Remove from heat. Let cool to room temperature. Serve and enjoy!
How long does cranberry sauce last? You can make this recipe up to a week ahead of time and keep refrigerated in an airtight container.
Can you freeze cranberry sauce? Yes! Just like most jams and jellies, Homemade cranberry sauce freezes beautifully. Pack in an airtight freezer-safe container and freeze. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight. For best results use within 2 months.
What To Do With Leftover Cranberry Sauce
Cranberry Sauce is pretty synonymous with Thanksgiving side dishes, but you can use cranberry sauce in so many things.
- Mix in a couple tablespoons with Greek Yogurt, topped with granola for a delicious healthy breakfast or snack.
- Drizzle with a little maple syrup and top with some homemade whipped cream, for a simple dessert. So good!!
- Put it on pancakes, waffles, or crepes.
- Stir some into hot oatmeal or use as a layer in Overnight Oats.
- Cook up this Cranberry Chicken – a weeknight dinner lifesaver!
- Make Slow Cooker Cranberry Meatballs with it!
- Bake a Cranberry-Orange Pound Cake – perfect for a Sunday brunch!
- Whisk some into your favorite BBQ sauce.
- Blend into smoothies.
- Whip up a batch of Cranberry Honey Butter!! SO GOOD.
- Use some for these Cran-Turkey Enchiladas – the best use for any Thanksgiving leftovers!
More Cranberry Recipes:
- Apple Cranberry Crisp
- Cranberry Fluff
- Cranberry Christmas Cake
- Upside-Down Cranberry Cake
- Cranberry Hand Pies
I hope you love this delicious and easy recipe – be sure to give it a review below! Also don’t forget to follow Belly Full on TikTok, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube!
Homemade Cranberry Sauce
- 12 ounces fresh or frozen cranberries
- 1 cup pomegranate juice
- 1/4 cup orange juice
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- pinch of salt and pepper
- In a medium saucepan, mix together all of the ingredients.
- Bring to a boil; reduce heat to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until the cranberries pop and the sauce has thickened, about 10 minutes.
- Remove from heat. Let cool to room temperature.
- Serve with turkey, pork, or even mixed into plain yogurt for a healthy dip!
Reader Questions and Reviews
This was GREAT! Perfect addition to our Thanksgiving feast and so much better than canned. I made it the day before.
I cannot have pomegranate as it reacts with medications I have to take. Do you think regular cranberry juice would work?
Cranberry juice will work fine, it will just lend a different flavor.
Couldn’t wait to make your cranberry butter, but read about this sauce so thought I’d give it a whirl instead of buying it from a can. Why not, right? Seemed simple enough. LOVED IT. My new favorite cranberry sauce. Will be making this again for Thanksgiving!
I took this but added a little orange zest and fresh grated ginger to it…amazing!!! Love how the pomegranate juice softens the sharpness of the cranberries!
YUM! Made this for thanksgiving and it was perfect!
I’ll have to try this! Cranberry sauce is one of the few side dishes that my family allows me to play around with. Most everything else for Thanksgiving (and Christmas and Easter) has to be from my late mother’s traditional recipes. I may add to but never omit or change any of her recipes. Fortunately she used canned cranberry sauce so I have leeway there.
I never thought I could love a cranberry sauce recipe as much as my moms, but this is my new go to.
I made this and served it over poached pears. It was wonderful. Family memories with food are the best. One weekend our family went wild blackberry picking. We then made jam together. We were so proud pf ourselves. Problem was the berries were full of large seeds. Good taste, but terrible to eat. The jam is long gone, but the memory is fresh.
I remember that pomegranate tree, and this post brings back fond memories! It produced the best pomegranates ever and haven’t found store-bought to match their size and taste since we lost the tree in a strong wind storm. We love this sauce so much – it’s the only one I ever make now.
A nice alternative to cranberry sauce for Turkey….
.did you know at the near east markets you can buy pomegranate molasses (not syrup, but molasses)…..I use it as a sauce for chicken but make sure to add brown sugar….it’s a tart, but a good change….I dilute with chicken broth….